Rank and file Dems to Pelosi: extend all the Bush tax cuts

posted at 2:13 pm on September 13, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

After John Boehner reiterated his call to extend all of the Bush-era tax cuts expiring at the end of the year, the White House once again tried hammering him as an extremist looking to protect the rich at the expense of the middle class.  House Democrats will undercut that messaging with their own call to put off tax hikes for the next couple of years.  In a letter circulating on Capitol Hill and reviewed by Politico, Blue Dogs and other Democrats tell Nancy Pelosi that this is no time to raise taxes or to extend the uncertainty:

POLITICO has obtained a draft of a letter from rank-and-file lawmakers to Pelosi and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer urging them not to let tax rates rise for Americans at the highest income levels.

“We believe in times of economic recovery it makes good sense to maintain things as they are in the short term, to provide families and businesses the certainty required to plan and make sound budget decisions,” the House members write in a letter that was being circulated for signatures on Friday and is expected to be delivered today or Tuesday.

Reps. Jim Matheson (Utah), Glenn Nye (Virginia), Melissa Bean (Ill.) and Gary Peters (Mich.) drafted the letter and are working to gather support, mostly from the moderate Blue Dog and New Democrat coalitions, for at least a temporary extension of the rates for top income earners as well as those in the lower brackets.

This comes at the same time that Boehner’s remarks have stirred controversy — although largely from the absence of context.  The media originally reported them as a retreat back to the White House petition.  Instead, Boehner said that he would vote to approve a bill that only extended the middle-class portion of the tax cuts if that was all that was offered.  Boehner scoffed at the notion that he was holding those tax-cuts extensions hostage, which a moment’s thought would prove correct.  Pelosi has a 77-seat majority in the House, and can pass anything Democrats want.

Clearly, some Democrats are now wondering if they want a class war right before the election.  That kind of strategy plays well in districts like Pelosi’s, but is falling flat in the rest of the country.  Democrats played that card in 2006 and 2008, and after four years of control in Congress, it’s no longer a trump card.  Democrats need to find a way to generate growth, and the only way to do that is to get people with capital to put it to work — which the coming tax hikes will prevent.

The Obama administration is doing its best to portray Boehner as an extremist.  Unfortunately for Obama, his own party shows that it’s the White House on the extreme, pushing tax hikes in the middle of an economic stall.  It also points to a bigger problem with the strategy, which is that punching down below one’s weight is never a good idea.  Instead of marginalizing Boehner, the White House is practically lending him the bully pulpit by putting Boehner at the same level as the President.  That helps the GOP, because most of the electorate understands that tax hikes will be disastrous for the economy — and Obama doesn’t exactly have a track record of success that gives him the benefit of the doubt.


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I’m confused – I keep hearing that we’re trying to extend middle class tax cuts.

I was under the impression, listening to the Democrats for the past decade or so, that there were no middle class tax cuts. It was only “the rich” that Bush’s tax relief affected.

Now, as if by some miracle (aka, when Democrats are in trouble with the electorate), we magically find out that EVERYBODY got tax cuts from Bush and the GOP – not just the rich.

So that was a bald-faced LIE every time anybody ever claimed it in public.

Good Lt on September 13, 2010 at 2:16 PM

heh, so rank and file Dems are providing the Republican leadership cover for his position.

Perfect…

hey, where’s mah popcorn?!

ted c on September 13, 2010 at 2:16 PM

Aide: “The peasants are revolting.”

Pelosi: “They sure are.”

Vashta.Nerada on September 13, 2010 at 2:17 PM

“We believe in times of economic recovery it makes good sense to maintain things as they are in the short term, to provide families and businesses the certainty required to plan and make sound budget decisions,” the House members write in a letter that was being circulated for signatures on Friday and is expected to be delivered today or Tuesday.

WHY does it make “good sense”? The answer to that question completely undermines the entirety of liberal tax policy, and the liberal-on-steroids tax policy of this administration and this congress.

Will the GOP fully capitalize on this tacit admission by Democrats that their entire fiscal philosophy undercuts economic growth? A few will. Others will miss the opportunity, as Republicans are sadly prone to do.

IronDioPriest on September 13, 2010 at 2:19 PM

but we can’t AFFORD all those tax cuts for “the rich”…..

/dem

search4truth on September 13, 2010 at 2:19 PM

Next they will be trying to have those below the poverty line begin hiring people. Ever get a job from a dumpster resident.

tarpon on September 13, 2010 at 2:20 PM

I say the GOp should require a bill marked up before even beginning this discussing. The dems say this and that but they have no bill. What will they hide in it this time?

Get the bill on the floor and let
s debate the bill until then its all smoke and mirrors on both sides.

I know if the dems nor the GOp does anything my takes go about about $1000 come jan 1st. That’s $1000 less middle income people can spend in the economy. and for those that think $1000 bucks isn’t that much the avg christmas shopping customer spends about $850 per year. So an $85 decline in christmas shopping means a 10% decline in sales which puts the country back into a recession.

unseen on September 13, 2010 at 2:20 PM

I guess we can consider that these rank and file Dems have now come full circle on tax cuts since they are now to the right, essentially, of the House minority leader…

ted c on September 13, 2010 at 2:22 PM

“For the short term.” Yeah, till November 3…

sandee on September 13, 2010 at 2:22 PM

I was under the impression, listening to the Democrats for the past decade or so, that there were no middle class tax cuts. It was only “the rich” that Bush’s tax relief affected.

Good Lt on September 13, 2010 at 2:16 PM

Yeah, funny how that works.

petunia on September 13, 2010 at 2:25 PM

Clearly, some Democrats are now wondering if they want a class war right before the election.  That kind of strategy plays well in districts like Pelosi’s, but is falling flat in the rest of the country.

 

Do you mean:

“From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs.

Karl Marx

Doesn’t work anymore?

That’s really a bummer for the oppressives.

Chip on September 13, 2010 at 2:27 PM

This was a dumb fight for Obama to pick. If he wins, he gets the tax cuts for the top income earners(i.e. the job creators) to expire. So the economy tanks even further and he’s stuck claiming the “credit”. If he loses, all the tax cuts get extended and he’s left looking weak and powerless even with his own party.

Doughboy on September 13, 2010 at 2:29 PM

Democrats need to find a way to generate growth win 2010 election , and the only way to do that is to get people with capital to put it to work give money to democrats now — which the coming tax hikes will prevent

Sorry Ed, can’t resist.

Their tactic is just like John McCain acting all conservative and pro-border fence .
None of them have any credibility.

macncheez on September 13, 2010 at 2:29 PM

. It also points to a bigger problem with the strategy, which is that punching down below one’s weight is never a good idea. Instead of marginalizing Boehner, the White House is practically lending him the bully pulpit by putting Boehner at the same level as the President.

It’s almost as if The Whine had no experience. Oh, wait. . .

rbj on September 13, 2010 at 2:29 PM

C’mon, we all know that the tax cuts caused the recession… so let ‘em expire and happy days will be here again!

/2006-2009 talking point

mankai on September 13, 2010 at 2:30 PM

Doesn’t take much to ‘get to the level of the President’ now-days.

So, in essence, the “New” Democrats and Blue Dogs are calling Barry and Nancy “extremists”. My, how the worm has turned. You’d think it was election time.

GarandFan on September 13, 2010 at 2:30 PM

Once again. Hope and change=what did GWB do!

rjoco1 on September 13, 2010 at 2:31 PM

Bush-tax-cuts-for-the-wealthy (all said together as one word)will now be Obama’s-tax-cut-for-the-middle-class (all said together as one word.

Problem for Dems resolved.

Queen0fCups on September 13, 2010 at 2:31 PM

FTA–The media originally reported them as a retreat back to the White House petition.

“Position?” (This WH doesn’t petition; it IS the higher authority.)

Barnestormer on September 13, 2010 at 2:32 PM

I know if the dems nor the GOp does anything my takes go about about $1000 come jan 1st. That’s $1000 less middle income people can spend in the economy. and for those that think $1000 bucks isn’t that much the avg christmas shopping customer spends about $850 per year. So an $85 decline in christmas shopping means a 10% decline in sales which puts the country back into a recession.

unseen on September 13, 2010 at 2:20 PM

The wife and I get whacked to the tune of about $5,000. That’s quite a bit of cash that we will not be spending to “stimulate” the economy.

Johnnyreb on September 13, 2010 at 2:33 PM

So far I only show up on one post … will this one number two? Let’s see …

Glenn Nye (Virginia), my representative. He voted for Pelosi, and the stimulus … but held back his votes for ObamaCare until Pelosi knew she had it then he voted no. He voted for numerous other democrat disasters including the financial “reform” bill.

So I believe his sincerity as much as I believe the moon is made of cheese.

darwin on September 13, 2010 at 2:33 PM

Hey!!! I showed up!!!!

darwin on September 13, 2010 at 2:34 PM

So the tax increases are good, except during an election cycle, when they need support of the people they are representing?

right2bright on September 13, 2010 at 2:34 PM

Personally, they can let the tax cuts expire but cut government spending by 15% now with an additional 5% cut every 5 years until it reaches a total of 25%. There would also need to be legislation on balancing the budget…for real.

trs on September 13, 2010 at 2:36 PM

Tax cuts are bad for the economy, and according to Biden taxes are patriotic. But for the last ten years we were told…*scratches head*…

Bishop on September 13, 2010 at 2:38 PM

The rich already don’t get any benefits, like college scholarships for their kids, from the government, so why can’t they have taxes that look like everybody else’s ?

J_Crater on September 13, 2010 at 2:39 PM

“I support extending all of the expiring tax cuts until Nebraska’s and the nation’s economy is in better shape, and perhaps longer, because raising taxes in a weak economy could impair recovery,” Nelson said in a statement Thursday.

’cause in a strong economy they only help!

mankai on September 13, 2010 at 2:40 PM

The rank & file Democrats to join the Party of No in extending the Bush tax cuts. Better get Obama’s speechwriters some smelling salts. Oh, and save a little for Juan Williams. LOL!

TN Mom on September 13, 2010 at 2:44 PM

The rich already don’t get any benefits, like college scholarships for their kids, from the government, so why can’t they have taxes that look like everybody else’s ?

J_Crater on September 13, 2010 at 2:39 PM

Because they’re evil. The rich employ people. How evil is that? They must be punished by making them unable to employ people.

Only then will we reach the paradise, the utopia, the world where we all are below our ideal weight and singing kumbya while holding bony hands.

darwin on September 13, 2010 at 2:44 PM

Blue Dogs? I thought they were an extinct specie.

tommer74 on September 13, 2010 at 2:45 PM

and Obama doesn’t exactly have a track record of success that gives him the benefit of the doubt.

Nor does he or his economic team have a clue about economics, outside of Keynesian professorial idiocy, which is failing all around.

Schadenfreude on September 13, 2010 at 2:47 PM

Reps. Jim Matheson (Utah), Glenn Nye (Virginia), Melissa Bean (Ill.) and Gary Peters (Mich.) drafted the letter and are working to gather support, mostly from the moderate Blue Dog and New Democrat coalitions, for at least a temporary extension of the rates for top income earners as well as those in the lower brackets.

If 40 Democrats go along with this, Boehner should draft a bill that would extend the entire 2003 tax policy for TWO YEARS, ending in December 2012. This would give Boehner a House MAJORITY for the bill. This could be a double-whammy, since Democrats voting for it would be more likely to save their seats, although many of them will still have to defend votes for Porkulus and ObamaCare, but it would also put the onus on the Senate to pass it as well, which means that vulnerable Dem Senators might have to commit themselves to either voting against it or filibustering it. Harry Reid might refuse to bring the bill to a vote, but he also is up for re-election this year.

The reason for proposing a TWO-YEAR extension, is so that Obama himself will have to defend the “automatic” tax hikes during his re-election campaign, while all Republican candidates (for Congress and for President) will remind the voters that taxes will go up UNLESS Republicans are elected.

Steve Z on September 13, 2010 at 2:49 PM

Blue Dogs? I thought they were an extinct specie.

tommer74 on September 13, 2010 at 2:45 PM

Yeah, pretty much. The ones claiming to be “blue dogs” are just as scummy as the rest. Don’t believe a word they say.

darwin on September 13, 2010 at 2:49 PM

More speeches Pinnochio!
Interrupt Monday night football and Housewives, and dancing With the Stars, and American Idol.

More speeches, play the race card, the class card, the communist/socialist card, Pinnochio we love ya!
More, more, more!

Yes, yes, yes, don’t stop now,
Pinnochio less vaca more speeches. Yes you can! Yes you can, yes you can!
More Stimulus, more heathcare, more cap and tax, more payoffs to unions more regulationm, tax the fat cats More, more, more, faster, faster, faster, dont stop now “Cousin Eddie” your the WON!
S/

dhunter on September 13, 2010 at 2:49 PM

After the DNC recently told the Blue Dogs that it’s every man for himself (ie. no money for you) I don’t blame them if they decide to damn the torpedos and employ any strategy available, even if it takes down the whole ship with them.

tommyboy on September 13, 2010 at 2:50 PM

“We believe in times of economic recovery it makes good sense to maintain things as they are in the short term, to provide families and businesses the certainty required to plan and make sound budget decisions,” the House members write

Economic recovery ? Really ? We are in an economic recovery ??

This statement needs to be read between the lines. What they are really saying is :

“Just for these few months, hold the talk of tax increases. Let us win our seats. Then you can make us do whatever you want. Just a few months..thats all we ask. “

macncheez on September 13, 2010 at 2:50 PM

They just want to get reelected. That’s all this is.

darwin on September 13, 2010 at 2:51 PM

Blue Dogs? I thought they were an extinct specie.

tommer74 on September 13, 2010 at 2:45 PM

They are Bluebollz dogs actually..

macncheez on September 13, 2010 at 2:52 PM

Don’t believe a word these democrats say. This is strictly for reelection purposes. Once reelected, they’ll stab you in the back faster than Obama can say Booooooooooosh!

darwin on September 13, 2010 at 2:59 PM

How about these idiots simply cut spending and give us back more of OUR money or OUR taxes?

I do it when I’m short of funds, not brain surgery people….come to think of it, dems could use it.

Never mind, dems and brains are an oxymoron.

dthorny on September 13, 2010 at 3:00 PM

Pelosi has a 77-seat majority in the House, and can pass anything Democrats want.

and the gop continues being called the party of no…what a bunch of losers…

cmsinaz on September 13, 2010 at 3:01 PM

So that was a bald-faced LIE every time anybody ever claimed it in public.

Good Lt on September 13, 2010 at 2:16 PM

yep

cmsinaz on September 13, 2010 at 3:03 PM

isn’t this what orzag suggested a few days ago? and then he backtracked?

cmsinaz on September 13, 2010 at 3:05 PM

Personally, they can let the tax cuts expire but cut government spending by 15% now with an additional 5% cut every 5 years until it reaches a total of 25%. There would also need to be legislation on balancing the budget…for real.

trs on September 13, 2010 at 2:36 PM

Never settle on their lies. The “measly” 3% tax increase they claim, is in fact, an 8.3% federal tax increase in the 36% bracket “on those making less than $250,000″.

As obowma reminded us on not raising taxes below 250k, just the opposite is true.

dthorny on September 13, 2010 at 3:07 PM

More and more folks will see what these Dems are doing as nothing more than what it is: a gimmick. Just like leaving the word “Democrat” off campaign material. Way to insult the people’s intelligence.

Christien on September 13, 2010 at 3:08 PM

Next they will be trying to have those below the poverty line begin hiring people. Ever get a job from a dumpster resident.
tarpon on September 13, 2010 at 2:20 PM

That is a loaded question or my mind is in the gutter today.

dthorny on September 13, 2010 at 3:10 PM

Steve Z on September 13, 2010 at 2:49 PM

With De Mint fast closing on him, Boehner just might act. Otherwise … SOS

Caststeel on September 13, 2010 at 3:11 PM

ted c on September 13, 2010 at 2:22 PM:

I guess we can consider that these rank and file Dems have now come full circle on tax cuts since they are now to the right, essentially, of the House minority leader…

Man, what a stinging truth. Boehner dropped his drawers for no good reason. It’s that kind of kneejerk proclivity to “reach across the aisle” that must be purged from the GOP. You have nothing and no one to reach across to, when your opposition is not operating in good faith.

IronDioPriest on September 13, 2010 at 3:16 PM

Good Lt on September 13, 2010 at 2:16 PM

My same critique for a few weeks now. Not holding the bald-face lie up the the light of day sure seems to me to be an opportunity missed.

Y’know Ed, it’s also somewhat telling that both Romer who quit and then publicly stated she supported extending the Bush tax cuts and then Orzak quit and publicly stated the same. Of course, Romer wanted both extending and additional spending, but Orzak said extend all the Bush tax cuts for 2 years. That makes me think that Obama has drawn a line in the sand, I sure hope I’m right.

Texas Gal on September 13, 2010 at 3:17 PM

You have nothing and no one to reach across to, when your opposition is not operating in good faith.

IronDioPriest on September 13, 2010 at 3:16 PM

amen!

cmsinaz on September 13, 2010 at 3:18 PM

The most bitter part of this pill for the democratics is of course the tag ‘Bush tax cuts’. They can tweak it here and there, and even if they left the ‘rich’ off of it, it’s still going to be named after the antichrist that they have blamed for everything.

Everything is Bush’s fault, so the prescription is -more Bush.

slickwillie2001 on September 13, 2010 at 3:21 PM

[trs on September 13, 2010 at 2:36 PM]

TRS, Reagan gave into a push to raise taxes because Congress promised to cut spending $2 for every $1 increase in revenue from the tax increase. It didn’t happen. I think that was with Tip O’Neill. This is but one example of many.

Your compromise just isn’t one. It’s a suckers bet. But if you really must agree to take more money from the rich, for whatever reason you have, please, do them the favor of doing it after you get the spending cuts you promise, not before.

Dusty on September 13, 2010 at 3:25 PM

PresBO says that GOP is trying to force him to give every millionaire a $100k tax break. Let’s think about this: would a millionaire be more, or less, likely to “create a job” if they had another $100k for salaries?
 
You betcha: I’m all for giving a millionaire BACK $100k of his/her money to expand their business.

CLaFarge on September 13, 2010 at 3:28 PM

The wife and I get whacked to the tune of about $5,000. That’s quite a bit of cash that we will not be spending to “stimulate” the economy.

Johnnyreb on September 13, 2010 at 2:33 PM

Not good. not good at all. the biggest problem I see with these tax cuts expiring is when they are set to go. If nothing is done then come Jan 1st taxes go up. If people are expecting a tax hike in Jan 1st of $1000-$5,000 then they will cut way back on christmas season. They have an excuse. Not many people like to spend on christmas any how but they feel they are required to to a certain extent. well they like giving gifts its that they feel obligated to get a bigger or better gift. Now if these tax hikes are coming Jan 1st people have an excuse. Not for the kids but for other family members, friends etc. People will “understand” the reason no gift this year etc. and that means christmas sales added into the already high gas/food costs will be way down this year. which means more retail going out of business, more commercial real estate going on the market more bank failures etc….

The point is that there could not be a worse time to raise taxes then right in the middle of the christmas season.

These people are idiots.

unseen on September 13, 2010 at 3:29 PM

“For the short term.” Yeah, till November 3…

sandee on September 13, 2010 at 2:22 PM

THIS!

Gang-of-One on September 13, 2010 at 3:30 PM

I see…
extend them to the 2012 election and we’ll do this dance again.

It’s just hilarious that it’s the Republican’s fault whether they are in the majority or not and no matter what…

And their sheep buy it! just like tax cuts for the rich!

SOMEHOW these people have to be educated, though MILLIONS have woken up.

NOW… the Republicans had better wake up and weed the RINOS!

golfmann on September 13, 2010 at 3:39 PM

Rush was saying this was a good move by Boehner. Pinnochio is tryin to play the class envy card by raising taxes on only “the rich” and making Republicans the evil rich guy supporters and Boehner played it well by agreeing that if middleclass is all they can get he will go for it, BUT it will not help the economy or the deficit as there are not enough rich to make a difference.
Boehner called Pinnochios’ bluff.
It should be a piece of cake to educate the American People with the financial advisors almost all coming out against ANY increase, but this is where the Leftwing, hasbeen, dead cat media comes into full propaganda mode pulling for Pinnochio!

dhunter on September 13, 2010 at 3:44 PM

We lookee here. A lot of people are waking up to the fact that they too are dirty, rotten, stinking, filthy rich.

If the evil Bush tax cuts are not extended everyone’s going to find out when they get their first paycheck in 2011.

BowHuntingTexas on September 13, 2010 at 3:50 PM

dhunter on September 13, 2010 at 3:44 PM

Good Post!..Rush is right about Boehner..Boehner knew this was coming and played it perfect..Yet we have conservatives who still want to run over the cliff..:)

Dire Straits on September 13, 2010 at 3:58 PM

Aide: “The peasants are revolting.”

Pelosi: “They sure are.”

Vashta.Nerada on September 13, 2010 at 2:17 PM

Hary Reid: I told you so. Plus, they smell.

katy the mean old lady on September 13, 2010 at 4:23 PM

The peasants are revolting.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYpYs9GBXwY

simkeith on September 13, 2010 at 4:35 PM

No – No
-
By all means, raise tax rates even higher.
-
Drive unemployment to 20%.
-
Lets give the American people a real reason to vote these braindead liberals out of office.
-

esblowfeld on September 13, 2010 at 5:13 PM

Aide: “The peasants are revolting.”

Pelosi: “They sure are.”

Vashta.Nerada on September 13, 2010 at 2:17 PM

King Louie: “They stink on ice!”History of the World, Part 1

Khun Joe on September 13, 2010 at 5:42 PM

This would be the only way to staunch the blood that’s currently spurting out of the Democrat’s jugular with regards to the midterm elections.

Which means the Democrats will not do it.

englishqueen01 on September 13, 2010 at 5:42 PM

But would O veto?

tims472 on September 13, 2010 at 5:47 PM

The democrat party is really a piece of work. Since Bush gave all Americans, rich and poor, tax cuts they bashed him over and over about the tax cuts. They have also been saying that Bush is responsible for the economy. Now, they want to extend the tax cuts. This flip flop on the tax cuts by the democrats should awaken the people of American that the democrats are nothing but partisan hacks and could really care less about the Country and the people and their only concern is to retain power. I would like to believe that the majority of the Country have learned exactly what these people are all about.

flintstone on September 14, 2010 at 12:41 AM

That shows how sincere they are. They don’t have to ask Pelosi for sh*t. She’s one wench. Legally, all she can do is regulate voting in the House; when she was halting votes, she was breaking the law and violating the Constitution. If they want the tax cuts extended, or even made permanent, all they have to do is vote on it. She can cast her vote on whatever side she falls on.

Virus-X on September 14, 2010 at 3:14 AM